Friday, May 11, 2018

Canadian minister asked to take off turban at US airport

Toronto:  A Canadian Cabinet minister said on Thursday he was subject to a discriminatory security check at Detroit's airport that caused Canada to complain to US government officials.
Minister of innovation, science and economic development Navdeep Bains said he was asked to remove his turban at Detroit Metro Airport on his way back to Canada last year.
He said there were challenges with the swab machine and he was recalled from the gate and brought back to security where he was asked to take the turban off. He said when they realized who he was they allowed him to travel and not take it off.
He told the Canada's French-language newspaper La Presse that "the experience made me uncomfortable," describing the agents as "very insistent and very difficult."
Being said asked to remove his turban is akin to "being asked to take off my clothes," he was quoted as saying.
He said US officials expressed regret and apologized and he's accepted the apology.
"I was very frustrated and disappointed that this occurred but ultimately I was allowed to fly," Bains said. "But it was because of who I was and that should not be the case. It doesn't matter what your status is and what your position is."
Bains said it's the first time he's been asked to take his turban off while travelling in the US. In the Sikh religion men are required to wear the turban.
Canada verbally protested to Washington over the incident, and received an apology. US authorities also ordered Detroit airport security staff to undergo further training.
11/05/18 Times of India